“Functioning is not merely the function of things, but also their mystery.”
– Jean Baudrillard
I don’t always understand the cerebral postmodernist commentary that comes out of French social theorist Jean Baudrillard’s mouth. But for some reason the above quote makes complete sense to me. We’re surrounded by tons of objects wherever we go, and we interact with them on a daily basis, forming relationships with many of them. But the significant relationships are created not by the object dictating its function, but rather by us, the user, engaging with the object and defining the function. From ambiguous forms rise curiosity and inquisition, thus inviting personal and subjective interpretation.
Canada-based designer Miya Kondo created these “Objects of Empathy,” a symbolic representation of an ideal relationship to objects. The sculptural forms are simple, stoic and beautiful, yet they are wholly ambiguous. With no agenda of their own they present themselves as malleable sponges, ready to be defined by the user.